10/09/2013

As Good As It Gets Moments

I was in Golden Gate Bridge south entrance doing the usual in bringing relatives to the popular scenery in San Francisco bay area. And I have my camera in b&w mode avoiding the common red color seen in photos. It was about 6:30pm right before sunset time.

In a back-lit scene I saw a pair of young couple taking beautiful portraits with the guy on top of a concrete slap. My hearts was pounding and raising for the shots of my day



Introduction To Golden Gate Bridge



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The Macho Post

DSC06121



Thoughts -- What's Next



Getting Ready



The Handstand



I have made two new good friends with Lukas and Elisa and I have picked the best shots shown above and send them over to the couple in email. Life is as good as it can get when we go out and live fully with passion. And in my case, that is with a camera and a friendly chat with my new friends after the shots.

I saw the couple full of energy and hope, vibrant with enthusiasm and courage. I wish I can go back in my youth and hang out with them in the concrete slab where their views are not blocked by others and they move as if there are new heights to reach. The young couple, the back-lit moments, the great scenery have made it a very memorable Saturday for me. The happy and vivid moments linger in my thoughts and I start my week with freshness and inspiration to try something unusual with strangers we meet. I have a couple of email correspondences with the couple and I hope our friendship goes beyond and that I have another chance to meet up with them.  Love the couple dearly as friends with Lukas & Elisa.


That is right, life is as good as it gets when we go out with passion on life -- be it a single picture or a simple kiss or a gentle hug with a stranger. I want to leave my boys and my blog readers with the message that we have to love and work with all our wills and passions and have the littlest regret as we can afford to keep.

9/27/2013

Up On The Inside -- JawBone Up



Jawbone Up by hin_man, on Flickr

1/60 sec, f/1.8, 55mm, iso 125, -0.3 Ev
Super-Takumar 55mm f/1.8, cosina 1:1 macro adapter, lens turbo
nex 5n, hand-held, wide open

Runs Like A Bunny
Sleeps Like A Piglet
And Eats Like A Turtle


The jawbone up band is likely the best gift that I have ever gotten from my company.   It keeps me Up on the inside with tracking on activity and sleep.  Though it claims to record your eating habits, it is kind of a gimmick as one needs to input manually over each meal.   Which is why the Turtle pose comes into play.  On my first trial with eating habits, it mentions taking a picture of the plate that I am taking -- I thought it couldn't be this smart.   And sure, it is anything but.  Someday, perhaps someday it will.   I won't be surprised some day the Up app can tell what we eat with a picture.    And where is the invisible watch that I keep raising my Up band to find?

9/22/2013

Satay Noodle, K20D send off

It is an irony that today it is pouring rain outside but I have to drive to work on Saturday and likely need to work from home on Sunday. I brought out my bag with K20D and a newly acquired used of kit lens with WR. The bag has two other used lenses that I recently bought with Sigma EX 50mm f/2.8 1:1 macro and my favorite zoom with Tamron 70-300mm 1:2 macro. The whole package is a gift for my brother back in Macau and I was thinking to shoot in the rain but I chicken out due to no preparation with raincoat and the mundane day with lots of work to finish.

Had I had both the mood and time, I will take a Bart to San Francisco ferry building area with good street scenes with traffic lights and some normal scenes with people in and out of coffee shops. Perhaps scenes of the bay bridge traffic lights in long shutter with a tripod in the rain and a raincoat and good music for company -- that will be my best day to come with my Pentax gear.



And instead of the send off in the rain, I have my K20D in a noodle house that is my comfort food for the bad day or the good day -- it is likely one of the most unhealthy dish that I crave for and not meant for anyone with borderline glucose issue. I probably need to add 5 miles of walking the next day. What can we all do, we get one life to live -- fear don't get in the way and I always and I mean always jump for the instant joy of eating my Satay Noodle. Boy it tastes better than ever with my beloved K20D next to the wobbly noodle bowl.

All pictures were taken with Pentax K20D and Sigma EX 50mm f/2.8 1:1 Macro in f/3.5 with iso ranging from 640 to 1000. Shutter speed varies.



#1 Lime 

1/40 sec, 50mm, f/3.5, iso 1000, 0 Ev


#2 Tea & Hot Sauce
1/15 sec, 50mm, f/3.5, iso 1000, 0 Ev


#3 Satay It Is
1/15 sec, 50mm, f/3.5, iso 1000, 0 Ev



#4 Lime & Satay

1/35sec, 50mm, f/3.5, iso 1000, 0 Ev



I don't quite know why the Lime is there but I always squeeze out the juice to go with the Satay on the noodle. The spicy sauce in the Satay is not super-hot and I will challenge my two weeny boys to try it. Oh boy, I can't imagine the light up on their faces when they get the spices to kick in -- one can only imagine the very cutie face with a big O and hand-made fan around their cheeks. In truth, I add extra spicy sauce on the noodle. And I don't count myself as a spicy eating dude. A normal bite on jalapeƱo will be my type of spice that I can stand and love. I and perhaps many if not all can't handle anything habanero hots. The satay noodle is mild in that regard.





#5 Cucumber & Parsley Cool

1/50 sec, 50mm, f/3.5, iso 1000, 0 Ev


Almost every single time that I visit the noodle house, I forget to ask for more of the little cucumber that the shop puts into the Satay Noodle. I love the little cool mix of cucumber salad and a type Chinese parsley on the dish. It turns the noodle bowl into a great mix of mild spice of satay and with great flavor from peanut and coconut in the sauce. The small cucumber salad brings out the best hot and cold texture in the bowl which otherwise will not be as well balanced.

9/20/2013

Catch Me ....


DSC05171-2 by hin_man, on Flickr
Sigma 19mm f/2.8 old version and NEX 5N


I was riding the Gilory Garden Theme Park on a Mushroom Swing. I went with my older boy earlier and I shot my regular mode with a single shot central point. I might have done 20 shots on the 1st ride and none got into focus. And because I swung myself left and right and tried to aim at my boy in front of me, I lost my beloved LCD hood protector on my travel camera with NEX 5N.

On second attempt with my younger boy, I changed to auto-mutli-point and continuous shot with shutter priority. I was gunning on my boy like a maniac. And out of the bunch, I love this one. I set shutter priority with 1/60 sec, f/5.6 I think, and auto-iso on my small NEX camera. The lens is an inexpensive Sigma EX 19mm f/2.8 that does amazing job at a great price of $100. Can't be happier with recent Sigma great development from Art series type of lens, the wonderful 18-35mm f/1.8, and the superb available service of changing mount on the Sigma new lenses. If one ever goes from Sony to Fuji or Olympus, Sigma gives you the option in changing mount of your choice without adapters. A neat and great idea, I think.


9/19/2013

Don't You Mess With Me





1/60sec, 30mm, f/2.8, iso 1000, 0 Ev
Sigma 30mm f/2.8, nex 5N, Big crop from original


The picture was shot on a sleepy toad in Academy of Sciences in San Francisco through a glass enclosure.  It is unusual that I am posting picture not from my favorite Pentax K-5/K-7/K20D. It is a good question that I don't even ask myself consciously why am I posting more non-Pentax branded pictures. It is quite unfortunate (but lovely) that I have found the sweet spot in carrying less and do more with my photos. I still treasure and will continue to use my K-5 until it drops dead. Will I invest more on Pentax. Yes and No. I want to get the DA* 16-50, DA 18-135mm and and FA 31limited but I am short on funding and I want to reserve my funding for the NEX line of development. And the Fuji, Olympus, and the Hasselblad/Rolleiflex pull my legs all the time.

The truth of the matter is I can only pick one system to go out at a time. When it become more serious shooting as in an event, portrait, studio and others, I will pick Pentax.

9/16/2013

The Dance & Ultimate Kisses



The Jelly Fish pictures are stuck in my mind the whole Sunday and I re-do the editing on the first one and find others to have a dancing tune to their delicate movements. Perhaps my new headphone AKG K240 has UPPED my mood in the editing part of the pictures with great visualization and imagination.

#1 The Dancing Couple


The Dancing Couple by hin_man, on Flickr

1/640 sec, f/2.8, 30mm, iso 200, -1.3 Ev, hand-held 



#2 Turn With Lovely Tail


Lovely Tail by hin_man, on Flickr
1/800 sec, f/2.8, 30mm, iso 800, -1 Ev 


#3 The Happy Meet Up 


The Happy Meet Up by hin_man, on Flickr
1/250 sec, f/2.8, 30mm, iso 800, -1 Ev


#4 The Ultimate Kisses


1/100 sec, f/2.8 30mm, iso 100, -1.3 Ev



#5 Fallen In Love

Down I Go

Down I Go by hin_man, on Flickr
1/320 sec, f/2.8, 30mm, iso 400, -1 Ev




I absolutely love the series with blue tone myself.  It is gratifying to see the jelly fish under the beautiful and unique blue color. I was in awe with the beauty and I lack studying all the detail description of the type of Jelly Fish in the Aquarium venue of the Academy of Sciences museum. The aquarium tank is quite small and this type of jelly fish are moving constantly but not at great speed in a small tank as in 30 to 40 gallon size. Size of the jelly fish is above a small tangerine.

I may not shoot it correctly as I purposely shoot it underexposed by at least one stop and adjust brightness and highlight in post processing to bring out the darker surrounding and bluer translucent color from the amazing creatures. I shot some bigger jelly fish before in Monterey Bay Aquarium with long tentacles and some with smaller size body like a quarter coin but results don't come out nice like the above.

I shot the first few pictures in b&w as I love things in monochrome but they lose the vibrant color in the beautiful and unique blue tones



Mushroom & Cauliflower

Mushroom & Cauliflower
1/200 sec, f/2.8, 30mm, iso 100, -1 Ev




The Enchanted Family


1/500 sec, f/2.8, 30mm, iso 400, -1 Ev